Watching Sophie and Thomas together these days brings back so many memories of days out with the girls. As Thomas gets more able to join in with things that his sister does; as they start to play more and more together, I’m reminded of the beautiful bond that the girls shared and all those moments that they had together. And as beautiful as it is to watch Sophie and Thomas together, it will always make my heart ache that I am only watching the two of them, and not the three of them together.
It makes me sad at times that Thomas’s childhood, and the rest of Sophie’s, will be coloured by the loss of Jessica. That while I celebrate their little milestones and feel joy in seeing their beautiful sibling bond developing, it is always very bittersweet. I try not to show it – they deserve to have all those moments celebrated as fully as possible – but the heartache is there all the same. That reminder that the list of secondary losses that followed the loss of Jessica will continue to grow with each and every moment that I wish she could have been part of.
We’re now on the threshold of Sophie overtaking Jessica. This is the last half-term when she’ll be following in her sister’s footsteps; the last days of shared experiences. I’m finding that tough. We’re coming up to the second anniversary of Jessica’s death and all the tough memories of the last few weeks, all the ‘what-ifs’ and ‘if-onlys’. And that is so very hard.
Thomas (1 year 7 months)
- Can now count up to ten and recognises numbers. If he sees numbers, he’ll point at them and start counting – not necessarily matching the right number with the right sound yet though!
- Love singing away to himself – mostly nursery rhymes and theme tunes from CBeebies shows. He also joins in with singing Do-Re-Mi – he sings “do” and I sing “a deer, a female deer,” then he sings “re” and I sing “a drop of golden sun,” he sings “mi” and so on until the end.
- Loves mark-making.
- Has started saying and signing ‘please’ when he asks for milk. So adorable.
- Chats away to himself when playing with his toys. He also says ‘Mummy’, ‘Daddy’, ‘Sophie’ and ‘Jessica’ very clearly now.
Sophie (6 years 4 months)
- Has moved up another reading level at school and is now on gold books.
- Started swimming lessons at half-term and has been enjoying them.
- Has been enjoying making up her own craft activities – she’s had fun making a paper unicorn and various craft stick puppets. It’s lovely to see her using her imagination and getting creative.
- Loved getting to hold owls and a hawk at a Birds of Prey encounter session during half-term.
- Loved seeing so many of her cousins at Nanny’s 80th birthday party.
Jessica (forever 6 years 7 months)
- Sophie has been drawing lots of pictures of herself and Jessica lately and writing ‘I love you Jessica’ at the top. It’s lovely to know that she still thinks of Jessica but it does make me so sad too, thinking of the beautiful bond that they shared and what a huge loss that is for Sophie.